Rockstar Games

From the Audiovisual Identity Database, the motion graphics museum


Rockstar Games is an American video game publisher based in New York City. The company was established in December 1998 as a subsidiary of Take-Two Interactive, using the assets Take-Two had previously acquired from BMG Interactive. Founding members of the company were Terry Donovan, Gary Foreman and Jamie King from Take-Two, and Dan and Sam Houser from BMG Interactive.

Since its founding, several companies acquired by or established under Take-Two have become part of Rockstar Games, all bearing the "Rockstar" name and logo. The most notable of these subsidiaries are Rockstar North (formerly DMA Design), Rockstar Leeds (formerly Möbius Entertainment), and Rockstar San Diego (formerly Angel Studios).

Rockstar Games' most successful game franchise is Grand Theft Auto, the most recent main entry of which (Grand Theft Auto V) has sold over 170 million copies since its release in September 2013. Other popular franchises published by Rockstar Games are Red Dead, Midnight Club, Max Payne and Manhunt.

1st Logo (April 30, 1999-February 1, 2000)

Visuals: Several black-and-white shots of the Rockstar logo from different camera angles are shown, followed by the banner logo against a blue background as it turns . The logo is an orange rounded square with a black border, with an "R" in black and a star in white on a black border under it, both on the rounded square. The whole screen then becomes static-shocked like a computer would do, changing to the same blue background with the words "ROCKSTAR GAMES" in the center.

Technique: 2D animation.

Audio: The sounds of camera shots and people chattering, followed by a high-pitched synth which sounds like a whistle or a sine tone, which is gated in timing with glitches.

Availability: Seen on GTA: London 1961/1969 and the Dreamcast version of Wild Metal Country. It also appeared on a promotional video for the Japanese release of Thrasher: Skate & Destroy (titled Thrasher SK8).

2nd Logo (Still variants) (July 30, 1999-April 16, 2010)

Visuals: Just a still picture of the Rockstar Games logo on a white or black background.


  • Earthworm Jim 3D (1999, N64): An early version of this logo falls down on a white background. The logo is a rectangle with rounded edges and a prolonged outline with "ROCKSTAR" below.
  • Monster Trucks Madness (1999, N64): The logo with an italicized name on a black background.
  • Max Payne (2001, GBA): The orange logo appears without any name below.
  • State of Emergency (2002): The orange logo with the name in italics zooms in and blurs.
  • GTA Advance (2004, GBA): A still Rockstar logo on a black background.
  • Grand Theft Auto IV (2008): The logo slowly zooms out and fades out.
  • Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars (2009, NDS): The Rockstar logo is seen on a locked briefcase. It opens up with bags of money in it, which disappears one by one.
  • Beaterator (2009, trailer): The white outlined logo on a rainbow background.

Technique: A still digital graphic.

Audio: None.

Availability: Seen on the aforementioned games.

3rd Logo (October 1999)

Visuals: On a gray background is a close-up of the left reel of a rolling tape player, with a black and white version of the Rockstar logo in small print. It cuts to a full view of the tape player, which sits on a table and is lighted by three lamps from above. It then cuts again to a close-up of the oscillator on the bottom of the tape player, from which the opening frame of the trailer zooms in.

Technique: Cel-shaded CGI. This was animated by Aaron Garbut (then lead artist at DMA Design, later art director on much of the Grand Theft Auto series).

Audio: A hum from the tape player with MacInTalk Zarvox (a novelty text-to-speech voice that came in MacInTalk) saying the company name and a quiet and short buzzer.

Availability: Seen on the trailer to Thrasher: Skate & Destroy.

4th Logo (October 26, 2000-January 5, 2001)

Visuals: A couple of power sticks on both sides of the screen start generating electricity bolts that connect together to form the shape of the R* logo. The entire thing flashes with electricity to reveal the Rockstar logo and the words "ROCKSTAR GAMES" below in a neon light style.

Technique: CGI.

Audio: Sounds of electricity, and hums as the neon fades in.

Availability: Seen on Smuggler's Run, Surfing H3O and Midnight Club: Street Racing.

5th Logo (October 23, 2001-January 2, 2004; November 11, 2021)

Visuals: On a black background is a green static grid flash in, which disappears after a couple of seconds. Followed by this, there are the words "RAM OK" type in on the top-right corner of the screen, shortly followed by the words "ROM OK" typing in beneath. Both pairs of words then disappear, then the Rockstar logo draws itself out in the same style as the 6th logo, with the text "ROCKSTAR GAMES" typing in beneath the logo.


  • There is an extended version of this logo, which is described in further detail on Rockstar North's article.
  • An enhanced widescreen version of this logo, which is based on the extended version, exists.

Technique: CGI by Blur Studio.

Audio: Electronic sounds.

Availability: Seen on Grand Theft Auto III, several releases of Max Payne, and the US releases of The Italian Job, Smuggler's Run: Warzones (2002) and Smuggler's Run: Hostile Territory (2001).

  • The extended version is seen on all but the original PS2 version of Grand Theft Auto III.
  • The enhanced version is seen on Grand Theft Auto III: The Definitive Edition.
BMG Interactive
Rockstar Games
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